210 kilometers north of Hammerfest, the Transocean Spitsbergen found nothing of consequence after drilling the last of Statoil’s wildcat wells in the Barents Sea.
Since 2013, Statoil has executed an aggressive exploration drilling campaign to prove hydrocarbons in the arctic waters north of Norway beginning with a five wells campaign in the vicinity of the Johan Castberg discovery.
The following is a chart of the 2013-14 exploration campaign, via Statoil:
“It has been argued that the exploration programme has had limited success,” commented Irene Rummelhoff, Statoil’s senior vice president for exploration on the Norwegian continental shelf. “Indeed, we have made fewer commercial discoveries than we had hoped for. However, there are a number of things that I take pride in. We have tested a great variety of geological plays in frontier areas and dramatically increased our knowledge with the huge amount of subsurface data we have collected. We have also demonstrated that we can operate in a safe and efficient manner in the remote parts of the Barents Sea.”
Statoil’s drilling campaign in the Hoop area, the most northerly license area, was done while utilizing the Transocean Spitsbergen and began this summer marked by protests from Greenpeace. The environmental group said the campaign posed an environmental threat to Bear Island, an arctic nature reserve to the northwest of the license area.
The Transocean Spitsbergen will now proceed to wildcat well 7324/9-1 in the Barents Sea to cut and pull the wellhead, and then be idled until it heads to a yard period in January 2015.